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Q: We moved overseas a couple of years ago and have been letting our home.

Published Sep 9, 2020


We have now decided to sell it, but as the tenants have already moved out, the house will be vacant. Is that a good or bad thing? Any tips?

A: While it can be hard for viewers to make a critical emotional connection when the property is empty, there are several advantages to showing an empty home. Vacant homes allow for easy access for short-notice viewings and allow a buyer to see the basics of what they are buying and also to plan any renovations.

Fully staging a home is costly and time-consuming. But a few inexpensive staging tricks will make a home seem more inviting.

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◆ Leave the lights on during viewings to add warmth.

◆ Keep the lawn and exterior tidy.

◆ Put a fresh coat of paint on the front door, and use a pot plant or two, a new welcome mat and new house numbers.

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◆ Strategically placed rugs will help define spaces and add a splash of colour.

◆ Paint walls in neutral colours.

◆ Well-placed mirrors will brighten and lighten a room.

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◆ Soften cold, hard surfaces of a bathroom with neatly folded, fluffy towels.

◆ Arrange a couple of accessories on the kitchen counter.

◆ A vase or two of fresh flowers will add colour and make the home more inviting.

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– Steve Thomas, secure estate specialist for Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty

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